The explosions three minutes apart — the first near the central police station and two very close to parliament — sent MPs and office workers rushing for cover over shards of broken glass as a plume of white smoke rose above downtown.
A suicide bomber wearing a backpack detonated near the checkpoint at the police station, killing two, Enanga said. The second attack, involving two suicide bombers on motorbikes, killed one person.
“A booming sound like that from a big gun went off. The ground shook, my ears nearly went deaf,” said Peter Olupot, a 28-year-old bank guard close to parliament. “I saw a vehicle on fire and everyone was running and panicking. I saw a boda boda (motorcycle) man — his head was smashed.”
Antiterrorism police caught another potential suicide bomber and found a device at his home, Enanga said.
The ADF was founded by Ugandan Muslims but is now based in the forested mountains of the neighbouring Democratic Republic of the Congo, where it has been blamed for thousands of civilian deaths.
Last month, Islamic State claimed its first blast in Uganda — an attack on a police station in Kampala which killed no-one.
Days later, it said a “security detachment” in “Central Africa Province” bombed a restaurant. Police said the device killed a waitress and wounded three others, and linked it to the ADF, which has pledged allegiance to Islamic State.
Also last month, Ugandan police said a suicide bomber had blown up a bus, killing only himself. His affiliation was unclear.
Dino Mahtani of the International Crisis Group think-tank said the ADF's focus had shifted from settling local scores and controlling local war economies.
“With the more recent affiliation of its main faction to ISIS (Islamic State), a number of foreigners from across East Africa with more globalist jihadist agendas have been arriving into its camps,” he said.